Your hair plays a huge role in your self-confidence. So when it starts thinning, it could have an impact on your social life and mental health.
If you’ve noticed that your hair is starting to thin or you’ve been experiencing hair loss over the years, you may have considered getting a hair transplant to make you feel good again.
One of the most popular methods of hair restoration is an FUE hair transplant. This procedure is rising in popularity through the years and has proven extremely successful, with an average satisfaction rating of 8.3 out of 10.
Before you embark on your journey to restoring your hair and self-confidence, you’ll probably want to know more about the procedure and why you might need it. To help you get started, we’ve created this guide highlighting 5 things you should know about the FUE hair transplant.
1. What is an FUE Hair Transplant?
An FUE (follicular unit extraction) hair transplant is where individual follicles are taken from your skin and moved to other parts of the body where the hair is thin or absent.
This is different to a FUT (follicular unit transplantation) procedure, where skin grafts are taken to restore hair loss.
Due to the safety and success of the procedure, FUE hair transplants are typically more popular than FUTs.
2. Reasons You May Be Losing Your Hair
Some reasons you may be losing your hair include:
- Hereditary - The primary baldness gene is on the X chromosome which is inherited from mothers, bug hair loss can be passed down from both sides of the family.
- Ageing - Hair thinning and loss are often a natural part of ageing.
- Hormonal changes - This often causes thinning and is sometimes treatable.
- Medical conditions - Getting a diagnosis is essential to restoring your hair.
Some people embrace hair loss and will let it run its course untreated and unhidden. Others may want to cover it up with hairstyles, makeup, hats or scarves, or go with a treatment to prevent further hair loss or restore growth.
It’s important that you speak to your GP before looking into a hair transplant. They may be able to pinpoint the cause and tell you if it’s safe to go ahead with the procedure. Once you have a diagnosis, you may be able to try other methods to reduce and restore your hair, including medication and natural remedies, before resorting to a hair transplant.
3. What Makes You a Good Candidate for FUE
Unfortunately, an FUE hair transplant may not be suitable for some people.
The cause of your hair loss or thinning is just one of the things that will be taken into consideration when it comes to learning whether or not you’re a good candidate for an FUE procedure.
Some of the other factors that will help the surgeon make their decision include:
- Your hair type - Density and thickness are vital as they play a role in getting grafts.
- Your ethnicity - Afro-Caribbean hair transplants are a more complex procedure.
- Your age - If you’re under 25 your hair loss pattern may not yet fully be determined.
- Your health - For fast recovery with no complications, you should be healthy.
- Your scalp flexibility - It’s hard to remove and transplant hair if your scalp is tight.
You can learn more about why the above matter and if you’re the right candidate for a hair transplant by having a read of our guide on the best candidate for FUE hair transplants.
4. The Pros and Cons
Understanding the main pros and cons associated with an FUE hair transplant is key to learning more about the procedure and whether it’s right for you and your type of hair loss.
Pros of FUE
Cons of FUE
It’s quick as it only takes 2-4 hour sessions over the course of several days.
Bigger sessions can be required in rare cases which take 10-12 hours.
FUE is an outpatient procedure so you should be allowed to go home after the procedure.
It can be expensive, depending on your hair loss and requirements.
You won’t have to interrupt your daily routine too much after surgery.
Multiple sessions may be required if you have experienced extensive hair loss.
Scars are minimal and recovery is usually quick without any issues.
Hair in the donor areas will become less dense, but this isn’t always noticeable.
5. How to Research
Doing your research is an essential part of preparing yourself for an FUE hair transplant. The right clinic and surgeon will make all the difference in the healing process and the final results.
- Look into potential clinics and what they have to offer
- Read reviews from multiple sources
- Learn about the surgeons
- Get a free consultation (which they should offer)
These are just a few of the essential steps you should take when doing your research into your surgery and before choosing one.
Read our guide to finding the right hair transplant clinic for more information to help you make the right decision when booking your procedure.
6. The Cost Varies
The amount you should expect to pay for your FUE hair transplant in the UK will be determined by a few factors. Your individual hair characteristics alongside the number of grafts you require and the complexity of your transplant will play a huge part in the price.
On average, FUE hair transplants start at around £3,000 and can cost as much as £15,000. The expected cost of your procedure should be estimated during your free consultation.
It’s important to note that these costs will usually be a one-off and your hair transplant results should last a lifetime. In rare cases, people may require more than one hair transplant, but this is uncommon with today’s technology and the right surgeon and clinic.
7. Risks and Complications
Just like any surgical procedure, there are a number of risks and complications associated with getting an FUE hair transplant. Some of the common side effects associated with an FUE procedure include:
These side effects may be uncomfortable but they should go away a few days after treatment. If they don’t or they get worse, you should contact the team at the clinic or your GP. The right surgeon and clinic will drastically reduce the risks, but it’s still very important to be aware of potential complications for your own health and wellbeing.
While these side effects are rare, you should see your doctor if you notice any of the following:
- Signs of infection such as redness, pain, or puss.
- Drainage or crust at the surgery site.
- Pain or swelling that won’t go away.
- Follicle swelling (folliculitis).
- Bleeding from the surgical site.
- Numbness or tingling where the surgery was done.
- Hair growth that doesn’t match surrounding hair.
- Continued balding or thinning after the transplant.
Recovery from an FUE procedure should be quick and simple. The surgery is considered safe with minor possible side effects, such as white scars where the hair follicles were extracted.
8. Preparation and Aftercare
Recovery from an FUE procedure should be quick and simple. The surgeons and aftercare team should give you aftercare advice and information before and after your surgery. This will help you prepare for the side effects and how to look after yourself while you heal.
Your surgeon and the aftercare team should stay in touch and keep an eye on the healing process. Some aftercare instructions you should expect include:
- Avoid washing your hair for at least 3 days after treatment.
- Once you start washing your hair, use gentle, unscented shampoos for a few weeks.
- Take a few days off to help you speed up recovery and healing.
- Wait at least 3 weeks to start brushing or combing your hair.
- Don’t wear hats, beanies or clothing that covers your head until your doctor says so.
- Avoid strenuous exercise for at least a week after surgery.
Learn more about how to prepare for your hair transplant here.
Choose FUE Clinics for your hair transplant
If you’re interested in getting an FUE hair transplant or you’d like to know more, FUE Clinics can help. Treating a range of conditions that lead to hair loss, we have revolutionised the way healthcare providers deliver the best results and aftercare. Care and precision are key to a successful procedure and results, so you should expect and depend on them as a patient.
At FUE Clinics, we have a fantastic range of technology to restore hair to other areas of your body as well as your head. You can learn more about our clinics and what we have to offer by taking a look through our FAQ section. Or make an appointment for a free and honest no-obligation consultation. Contact us today to get booked in.